KU Office of Public Affairs
LAWRENCE – The 42nd class of undergraduate fellows and their faculty mentors were recently honored at a reception hosted by the University of Kansas Honors Program.
Attendees celebrated this year’s scholars and mentors with refreshments and listened to remarks from University Honors Program director Sarah Crawford-Parker and faculty member Nathan Wood.
The undergraduate scholars program recognizes and encourages sophomores who have demonstrated intellectual achievement and curiosity. Selected students are awarded a $1,500 scholarship, receive an Honors Faculty Fellow as a mentor who supports their academic interests, and participate in a seminar class promoting interdisciplinary engagement on a contemporary topic of interest.
This spring’s seminar is taught by Wood, an associate professor of history. “Technology and Society” will encourage students to apply a historical lens to the technological innovations that shape our world.
“I hope students will think differently about their relationship to technology, reflecting on how its history can provide analogies to understand our connection to technologies today,” Wood said. “A historical perspective on technology helps us be more humble about what it can achieve, more realistic in our assessments of its newness, and sober about the inequities that have been intrinsic to its use.”
The 2023 Undergraduate Scholars are listed below in alphabetical order with primary mentor, hometown, and faculty:
●Zakariya Ahmed, Overland Park interdisciplinary computer science graduate, mentored by Thom Allen, assistant professor of architecture.
●Levi Cromwell, McPherson graduate in classical languages and history, mentored by Darren Canady, director of graduate studies and professor of English.
●Andrea Gunara, a behavioral neuroscience graduate from Leander, Texas, mentored Stephanie Zelnick, a clarinet professor.
●Molly Handelman, a music therapy resident from Highland Park, Illinois, led by Nilou Vakil, an associate professor of architecture and design.
●Brinley Hull, Prairie Village computer scientist, mentored by Yvonnes Chen, professor of journalism and mass communications.
●Kanchan Khemani, business analysis and information systems specialist from Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India, mentored by Nilou Vakil.
●Shreya Koduri, graduate student in molecular, cellular and developmental biology and sociology at Overland Park, led by Katie Batza, director of graduate studies and associate professor of women’s, gender and sexuality studies.
●Carly Kolle, Linn’s biology major, mentored by Katie Rhine, associate professor of African and African-American studies and geography and atmospheric sciences.
●Shamaria Massenburg, a media journalism graduate from Knightdale, North Carolina, led by Yvonnes Chen.
●Caleb Prescott, aerospace engineering major from Lawrence, mentored by Mary Klayder, associate director of graduate studies and senior English lecturer.
●Diego Prieto, microbiology specialist from Bogotá, Colombia, mentored by Kyle Camarda, associate professor of petroleum and chemical engineering.
●Aarush Sehgal, MBA from Chandigarh, India, mentored by Kyle Camarda.
●Kalie Traverse, graduate student in molecular, cellular and developmental biology at Olathe, led by Mary Klayder.
●Hoang Viet Le, microbiology specialist from Bien Hoa, Dong Nai, Vietnam, mentor of Elizabeth MacGonagle, associate professor of African and African American studies and history.
●Emily Ward, anthropology and political science graduate from Edinburg, Texas, led by Katie Batza.
Created to recognize and encourage talented and academically motivated sophomores, University Scholars was founded in 1982 under the leadership of retired U.S. Tenth Circuit Chief Justice Deanell Tacha, then vice chancellor for academic affairs at KU, along with longtime University Honors Program Director Francis Heller, the Roy A. Roberts Distinguished Professor of Law and Political Science.